In a quiet moment during the Ealing Southall by-election (no sniggering at the back), I thought it would be interesting to see how much the various parties are using social networking site to support their efforts in the two parliamentary by-elections – and whether my sneaking suspicion that the Liberal Democrats are making the best use of it are true.
It’s possible that the other parties have secret groups we don’t know about, but based on what we cansee, here are the stats* – represented for your viewing pleasure in traditional bar chart form, with exciting added 3-D perspective:
In the Ealing Southall by-election, four parties have publicly listed Facebook groups. Labour don’t appear to have one, but I thought it only fair to include them in the chart as they did previously hold the seat doesn’t have a publicly listed group, but there is one in existence (thanks James Graham for spotting it). Both the Greens and Respect have small groups, and the Conservatives appear to be making steadily more use of Facebook, but the Liberal Democrats’ largest group has more members than the rest of the groups put together – and is more than twice the size of the Tories’.
There is a similar story in Sedgefield, where the Liberal Democrat group again has more activists than the others put together. The Green Party doesn’t have a group (and Respect aren’t fielding a candidate), and the Conservatives group is very small. It looks like only Labour can beat the Liberal Democrats here.
* For ease of charting, I’ve based this on the size of the largest public group I could find, but the figures are similarly ordered if you add up all of the groups and events for each party.